Friday, April 13, 2012

Highlights - Two Weeks

In my homeschool (and life, because they are essentially the same thing) over the past two weeks...
We went to Toledo, Ohio for a judo tournament.
(I already shared a few funny things I heard on the trip in another post.)
*Warning: proud Mama brag*
My oldest son earned 1st place in his judo division and my youngest won 2nd place in his. Woo hoo Boys!

So, we were heading out of town for judo and my littlest squirt REQUESTED that we take Fred with us. Who's Fred, you ask?

We recently broke down and bought the Life of Fred math curriculum to see what all the hype is about. Both boys are hooked. When my 9-year-old wants to take a math book on a Spring Break getaway...I might as well have discovered GOLD. I'm curious to see how long this lasts. (BTW: I'm enjoying the books too, but have been surprised at the number of grammatical errors that we have found. Oh well, at least it's not an English curriculum.)

To cram as much as we could into top off our weekend away, we visited the Toledo Museum of Art. Toledo (a.k.a. Glass City) has a building in its museum which is totally devoted to glass. It was fascinating to watch the glass blowing demonstrations.
*sidenote: They offer glass-blowing classes each weekend. If I lived closer, I would SO BE DOING THIS!

We hit the jackpot by going to the museum that particular weekend. Chamber Music winners from Bowling Green University performed trios, quartets, and quintets while we were there.

I think I might have been a little "high" by the time we left. (As a homeschool mom and an artist...I was on overload.) So much culture in one trip! Did I mention that it was all FREE?

Later that week, we celebrated Good Friday and Easter.
We made Resurrection rolls, opened up resurrection eggs (my son has a WONDERFUL Sunday School teacher who mailed them to us) and colored hot boiled eggs with crayons.

We talked about the life and death of Christ and the victory He provides. This season reminded me to be thankful that we homeschool. We get to focus on Christ everyday as we study our world. (Now I just need to MAKE SURE I'M CHOOSING TO DO THAT.)

After Easter, we killed about 5 rabbits.
*I'm singing Elmer Fudd in my head, "Kill the wabbit, kill the wabbit..."*
For those of you opposed to killing bunnies, you can relax...they were all made of chocolate.

Aunt Kris always gets a little carried away at the annual Easter egg hunt and all children get a pile of chocolate confections bigger than their heads.
I forgot about this little tradition when I filled my boys' baskets and got them chocolate crosses. Can you say, "Chocolardiac Arrest"?

On Tuesday, a homeschool assignment was:
"What practical (and fun) things can we do with all this Easter candy?"

We (literally) hammered the large items until they were bits and pieces. (Don't worry, they still have enough miniature Twix candy bars and marshmallow peeps set aside to keep them bouncing off my walls for weeks.)
Someday soon, when we have company to SHARE with, we will dip marshmallows, pretzels, and strawberries into our mutilated bunnies leftover chocolate. Oh, AND we plan to make some of these :

(except we will add peppermint oil to our chocolate rather than use thin mints)

The final addition that Easter added to our homeschool this year, was the wood-burning kit that Boy #2 received in his Easter basket. He's artistic, but I think this would get ANY BOY interested in art.
"Here honey, come play with FIRE for school."

I'm almost finished with this little wrap-up, but don't want to leave out one last experience from our homeschool adventures.
My girlfriend has been trying to get our family to try "Eat Right For Your Blood Type". It's a list of foods that are supposed to be beneficial or harmful to a person based on their blood type. Whether or not we buy into this new way of eating, it has sparked a lot of interesting conversations. And like any respectable homeschool family, we had to discuss it, research it, and take it a step further (to create more expense and work for ourselves.) We went ahead and ordered Blood Type Test Kits.
Amazon has them for $11 with free shipping, but
since we ordered four, it was cheaper to get them here
Our boys now know their blood types. They know all about RH factors, blood type ratios and genetic possibilities. They also know that a tiny prick to their finger is not something to cry about...but it doesn't feel all that "good" either.

I'd say we snuck in quite a bit of education along with our Easter vacation.
It's those special moments that keep a teacher (and her students) pressing on during these last precious (long) weeks of the school year.

Keep blogging about your activities friends, so I can keep being inspired in mine.
Thanks for reading,

The Homeschool Mother's Journal


  1. Looks like a really good 2 weeks! Congratulations to both boys for winning the Judo competition. We have Life of Fred books too and my son enjoys them but I'm not so sure how it would fare if it were the only math currciulum we have. The wood-burning kit looks like something my son would enjoy too! Thank you for sharing your weeks.

    1. I should have mentioned: the wood-burning kit only cost me $9 at Walmart. NINE! (it was on sale...but even at the "regular price" of $11...totally worth the cash.)

  2. We use Fred too. If you read the author's website, and the forwards in his books, I think he purposely leaves in typos to see if students can catch them. He says to email any you catch to him, and he'll send you a full list. We haven't done it yet, but we keep intending to.

    1. I like being able to tell myself that some of it was on purpose. Thanks! Either way, I like the way he writes and the excitement he has produced in my I'm not complaining (not REALLY). :)

  3. What a great week! Congrats on the competition!

    One of our favorite field trips was to a nearby glass company. Seeing them shape class was really cool!

    1. Wouldn't that be fun to do with some girlfriends? How many people can say they "blew glass" last Saturday.
      (My kids won't be the minimum age of 14 for a few years, so I'd have to "settle" for some girlfriends. What a fun day out being creative!)

  4. This was a fun read!! The glass blowing sounded great.
    Take care.

    1. I'm glad it was fun. Thanks for sharing that with me.
      I always question whether these wrap-ups are desirable to others if I don't have a "brilliant new lesson plan idea"...but if they can bring a smile, then it's TOTALLY worth it.

  5. I enjoyed reading about your activities. It must have been a lot more fun experiencing everything. I would have loved the art museum and bonus music as well.

    Visiting from HSMJ.

  6. So neat that Fred went with you on your trip! :-)
    You did so many interesting and educational things!

  7. I've heard great things about Fred! We'll definitely look into that when my kids are older :)

    I'm dying to do the blood typing thing! I have no idea what my kids' blood types are. (Well, my husband is O+ and I'm A+, so I have some idea, but you know what I mean.)

    Also, I now want to move to Toledo to take glass-blowing classes :)


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